Coronado Rugby Club fighting gender rules to protect female teammate
“He’s not letting me play because I am a girl and he feels bad for me, he is letting me play because after all these years I have the skills I need.”
The words of 13-year-old Gia Hernandez who is being told she can no longer play with her rugby team because of her gender.
The rules of Southern California Youth Rugby state that once a girl hits puberty, she has to transition to an all girls team which the league states is within 30 miles of the players current team.
So basically, after COED U12, there is a boys U14 and a girls U15 team. But, it isn’t always that easy to travel the 30 miles to an all girls location.
“I feel bad for my mom, she doesn’t have a car…she is a single mom, and we don’t have a lot of money.” Said Gia. “She would have to pay for an Uber every day or get a ride from one of her friends just to get me to practice.”
So, the team is continuing to fight to change the gender rules not just for Gia, but for girls in the future who want to continue to play with their teammates regardless of their age and gender.
“It’s just some old world ignorant thinking that still exists out there…” says coach Santos Trujillo. “We have strong young women who play out there, that deserve the opportunity, and we are going to go until we win.”